Giving the gift of health – tactfullyBy Oxygen's Staff Blog|Oxygen Staff|2012-11-01 | Comments: 0
- Rachel Crocker, Fitness Editor
If you are like me, you are always trying to find ways to introduce clean eating and exercise into your loved ones’ lives – in the most compassionate, non-judgmental way possible. Think about it this way: surprising someone with a gym membership can be interpreted in several ways, many of them not entirely positive.
That’s why the success of healthy holiday gifting lies in proper research and delivery. Before you plant down your plastic for that top-of-the-line Pilates reformer that you just KNOW your grandmother will love (hint: “love” may be a strong word), take these points into consideration:
1) Has this person expressed interest in starting up an exercise program? If so, great – they will likely be receptive to whatever fitness gift you have up your sleeve. But if not, there are gentle ways that you can work your influence. Making exercise a small part of an overall gift takes the focus off of that one aspect – for example, pair some comfy yoga pants (which, let’s face it, are worn more often to the grocery store than to yoga class) with an Oxygen subscription (wink, wink), or some resistance bands with a season of their fave TV show on DVD. You’re still giving the gift of fitness without being too “in your face”.
2) Is this person sensitive about their weight or lifestyle? This is a tricky one. You never want to come across as preachy or condescending, but you also want to share all the things you love about working out and eating right with them. Getting an activity-based gift that involves you both – like a six-week boot camp program or healthy cooking class you can take together – is a great way to bond while exposing them to the benefits of a healthy lifestyle.
3) Will the gift be appropriate for this person’s abilities/interests? Buying someone a TRX system might not be such a great idea if they don’t even know how to lunge properly. Likewise, before purchasing an indoor rock-climbing package, it’d be useful to find out whether or not the intended recipient is afraid of heights. (It’s happened to me!) Use common sense when scoping out potential gifts, and you’ll give presents that please every time.
4) Will it fit in the space they have available? A bachelor apartment wouldn’t be the ideal home for a Bowflex machine or a deep freezer. And take into consideration that many home workout series’ like P90X and Insanity require ample headroom and/or lateral space to do some of the plyo motions, so those living in a basement apartment or dorm room might not be able to execute the program properly. I repeat: do your research!
5) Will they actually use it? Cookbooks – like the many fine Eat Clean Diet options available at shopmusclemag.com (double wink, wink) – are wonderful gifts, but the truth is that once the wrapping paper is off, they often go unopened. Push your benefactor in the right direction by pairing a cookbook with the dry ingredients for one of your favorite recipes inside – that way, they are already halfway to finish line!
Do you have any tips for tactful gift giving or healthy present ideas? Let us know, or tweet us @oxygenmagazine
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